President Trump Must Propose a Unified
Mission To Explore and Develop Space
by Kesha Rogers
The author is a former candidate and Democratic nominee for the 22nd Congressional District of Texas in 2010-2012, and a former candidate for the U.S. Senate in 2014.
Jan. 23—President Trump must immediately develop and propose to the nation a unified mission dedicated to exploring and developing space.
Man creates his own future through discoveries of higher and more powerful principles than those he wielded before. Our species is a mighty geological force, with power to sustain, change, and develop itself and its environment, unlike any other species. The extent of this power was less evident in the Middle Ages and even into the 18th century.
In his Inaugural Address, President Trump stated,
We stand at the birth of a new millennium, ready to unlock the mysteries of space, to free the Earth from the miseries of disease, and to harness the energies, industries, and technologies of tomorrow.
These cannot be merely nice words. The question is, What is required to meet such a challenge and to harness the great potential before us? Fusion power development and human exploration of space are the necessary twin drivers of human progress at this time. The development of space is not just a choice among various policy initiatives, but the basis for advancing human progress for the long term, throughout our Solar system.
Thus, the immediate action required of President Trump is to define a unified national mission dedicated to the exploration of space, starting with the development of the Moon, and including the harnessing of its unique fusion energy resource, helium-3, for the benefit of the United States and the whole world.
China is already opening the door for a future of fusion energy through its Chang’e 4 and Chang’e 5 exploration missions. The United States cannot be left behind by ignoring this progress while floundering about with individual pet projects.
Fusion and Space Development
The path for United States leadership in space exploration and development was laid out in depth by Krafft Ehricke in the early 1980s, in his “Five Stage Lunar Development Program.” First, we examine the Moon from Earth. Second, we examine the Moon from lunar orbit, consider the optimal site for an industrial base, and establish automated laboratories and pilot facilities on the surface. Third, we locate the best spot on the Moon for an initial industrial base, and establish it there. Fourth, from this base, we establish a larger industrial zone that can return resources to Earth while expanding across the Moon. And fifth, we expand and diversify from this initial base to create a translunar space-faring civilization.1 China is already doing this, and the United States has to catch up after years of decay.
Courtesy of the late Krafft Ehricke
Krafft Ehricke understood that—
Space opens new horizons beyond Earth and offers new beginnings in ways we can manage this precious planet. It offers noble aspirations, opportunities for creative action, for bringing the human family closer together and contributing to a better future for all.2
Ehricke’s lunar development plan lays the basis for a viable space platform and the economic foundation for a better life on Earth, by enabling, for example, a fusion economy—fusion power development is the fourth of Lyndon LaRouche’s four needed laws to make the United States great once again.
The advances of a fusion economy will require a completely new set of international relations around the planet and will increase the creative and productive powers of mankind throughout the Solar system.
Fusion technology—the fusion torch—will separate waste into its constituent elements that can therefore be reused repeatedly. Fusion technologies will benefit all sectors of our economy, enabling us to increase the productivity of our labor force as spin-off technologies are introduced into sectors such as healthcare, agriculture, manufacturing, energy, defense, transportation, and resource development.
That is how fusion technology will open up massive, untapped resources that the United States can use to employ our citizens, grow stronger, build relationships with other nations, and become a leader in the world that other nations will respect, learn from, and collaborate with, in achieving the common aims of mankind.
Every nation that develops a mastery of fusion technology will free itself from the burden of limited resources, and enter into a new era of unprecedented wealth creation for its citizens.
In this way, the exploration and colonization of nearby space, and the development of the technologies required to do so, become a vehicle through which the United States will again inspire the world as we increasingly meet the common needs and aspirations of mankind. We can realize the vision of our great President John F. Kennedy, who said, at Rice University on Sept. 12, 1962,
For the eyes of the world now look into space, to the Moon and to the planets beyond, and we have vowed that we shall not see it governed by a hostile flag of conquest, but by a banner of freedom and peace. We have vowed that we shall not see space filled with weapons of mass destruction, but with instruments of knowledge and understanding.
A Unified Mission
Today, China is leading the world in fulfilling mankind’s extraterrestrial imperative, with steady progress in its lunar program as seen in its lunar probe, the Chang’e 5 mission, planned to be launched this November aboard the heavy lift Long March 5 rocket. This mission will be followed by the Chang’e 4 lander mission in 2018, executing mankind’s first soft landing on the far side of the Moon.
The United States must join in these efforts, and must remove all limitations to the needed cooperation. China and the United States must become partners in the development of space, and no one and nothing must stand in the way of that. We must bring about a unified human mission that establishes a completely new view of the human species in the Solar system and the Galaxy, defined not by the compartmentalization of space exploration and settlement, but by a new, unprecedented level of cooperation on Earth.
President Trump must act for a unified mission now.
1. The five steps are elaborated in Ehricke’s article, “Lunar Industrialization and Settlement—Birth of Polyglobal Civilization,” reprinted in Marsha Freeman, Krafft Ehricke’s Extraterrestrial Imperative (Apogee Books, 2008), pp. 259-287. The article is also available on the Lunar and Planetary Institute website at pp. 827-855. For a graphic depiction of the five steps, see Fusion Energy Foundation, Beam Defense: An Alternative to Nuclear Destruction (Fallbrook, CA: Aero Publishers, 1983), p. 144.
2. Krafft Ehricke, “A Case for Space” (1970), in Marsha Freeman, op. cit., p. 204.
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